Here are nine things you should know about dating dancers (inspired by this clever post about dating architects).
1. Dancers’ tastes are highly prone to change. They might love pancakes and blues music on Sunday and then think pancakes and blues music are the worst on Monday. This adaptability serves them well in the studio. If a movement they imagine doesn’t seem to work in real life, they’ll change it. Or, they’ll spend three hours trying to execute it before realizing they don’t like it anymore anyway.
2. They’re a little stubborn. It’s impossible to lift another dancer while doing a handstand, you say? Watch and learn, buddy. Real-world translation: the dimensions of that bookshelf are too large for the allotted area, you say? Watch and learn, buddy. Two dented walls and a broken bookshelf later, everything fits.
3. They like dance and they’re pretty sure you’ll like it too if you see as much of it as they do. They may shield you from the two-hour “Objectified: Why Ketchup Makes Me Look Like Meat” solo show, but they’ll invite you go to see anything and everything moderately audience-friendly. The great thing is that you’ll actually really enjoy it (most of it).
4. They have anywhere from three to fifteen different jobs, at least two of which are unpaid. This makes them seem scatterbrained at times, but they’re actually highly organized and dedicated.
5. Dancers’ financial planning skills enable them to get from Point A to Point B, but Point B is probably only two months away. Or it’s tomorrow. Dancers’ art is ephemeral and so is their money. That said, they don’t want you to buy them things. They can take care of themselves.
6. They talk a lot about their perpetual injuries, especially when with other dancers. It’s important to note that they aren’t complaining; injuries are just common conversation topics. “How’s that strained psoas today, Jen?” “Oh, it’s fine. But my IT band is killing me. How’s your knee healing?” “Pretty slow. Check out these bruises!” “Ooh, pretty!”
7. To combat the injuries, they’re constantly getting massages, acupuncture, acupressure and a variety of other bodywork methods that aren’t covered by the insurance they probably don’t have. If they’ve been in the field for a while, they have a pile of bodywork receipts somewhere that you should please not touch or move. It’s their accounting pile and it’s arranged just-so.
8. Dancers’ wardrobes tend to be either vintage-trendy or I’ve-been-wearing-this-disgusting-shirt-since-sixth-grade-and-it’s-still-comfortable-so-I-love-it. They have mastered the art of layering and are generally un-bashful when it comes to changing clothes in public.
9. They’re quirky by nature and they appreciate other quirky people. Don’t hide your collection of 1960s troll dolls or the fact that you can’t get up from a table without knocking on it first. Their freak flags are generally pretty close to the surface, so you should always feel free to fly yours.